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UK Government Officials May Buy Tesla Model S

UK Government Officials May Buy Tesla Model S
By: George Zack
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Tesla Motors Inc (TSLA) stands to be a key beneficiary as the UK jumps on the bandwagon of buying low-emission vehicles (LEVs). A few days back, China mandated that 30% of all government cars purchased should be electric vehicles, and now the UK is looking to purchase more than 150 LEVs.

Simon Sproule, a spokesman for Tesla, reported that the Model S is one of the contenders considered by the UK government officials. The UK government has set aside 5 million pounds ($8.6 million) for the purchase of LEVs. However, if the Model S is indeed selected by the British government officials, the 5 million pounds ceiling will have to be raised. Tesla has priced its right hand drive Model S at £50,280 in the UK, and if 150 Model S are purchased, the British government will have to spend at least an additional £17,000 per car.

Initiatives like the one taken by the British government will help Tesla boost production by 50% in 2014. Deliveries of the Tesla Model S started in China and the UK in April and June of this year, and customers in Hong Kong will start getting their vehicles from next week.

The Tesla Model S stands a very good chance of being selected by the British government, as it has an EPA certified range of 425 km, which is the highest of any electric vehicle. It is the only electric vehicle that can make at least two round trips between 10 Downing Street and Chequers, said Sproule, referring to the London residence and country retreat of UK Prime Minister David Cameron.

Tesla stock closed up 2.14% at $220.02 in Friday’s trading session, and has risen 44.35% so far this year.

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